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Full text of "The manufacture and properties of iron and steel"

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THE UNITED STATES.                                      471
tne' control rests in a man with a definite plan, that plan can be carried out, when in other works the plan might be conceived, but could not be accomplished.
The principle at Pittsburgh was to destroy anything from a steam engine to a steel works whenever a better piece of apparatus was to be had, no matter whether the engine or the works was new or old, and the definition of this word "better" was confined to the ability to get out a greater product. Such a course involved the expenditure of enormous sums of money, it involved 'the constant return of profits into the business, it involved mistakes, but it produced results, and the economies from the increased output soon' paid for the expenditure.
There is, however, a lack of attention to minor economies. The saving of fuel does not receive its share of attention, and while thousands of dollars are spent to dispense with the labor of one or two men, thousands of dollars in fuel are wasted. In Europe the labor is wasted and the fuel saved. There is a partial excuse in both cases. In Europe fuel is costly and labor cheap; in Pittsburgh fuel is cheap and labor costly. When a mill is working to its ultimate capacity, it takes more than one man to fill one job, because continuous work is impossible. Consequently, extra hands must be provided that would be superfluous in foreign work, A machine that saves the work of "one man" really saves more than one man, and in Pittsburgh this will represent from five to ten or even twenty times as much as in Silesia or Lothringen. On the contrary, fuel is cheap in Western Pennsylvania, and it is better to waste money than to have complicated apparatus to get out of order.
This idea has led to a sameness in the methods of manufacture in America, rendered quite natural by the fact that the metallurgical conditions are uniform over a large area. Throughout the greater part of America, the use of Lake Superior ores is universal, these ores being of two kinds: (1) those that give a pig-iron with not over 0.10 per cent, of phosphorus; (2) those that give a pig-iron ranging from 0.10 to 0.25 in phosphorus. The last, the "non-Bessemer," is sold at a lower price, and while all of the Bessemer steel is made in acid converters, a great part of the open-hearth product is made on the basic hearth, the non-Bessemer pig-iron being used for this purpose. The low content of phosphorus takes away all